Cocktail Arcade Cabinet Build: Supplemental - a Mistake to Avoid When Choosing a Display

| Comments

I still have two or three blog entries to write to bring us to the end of the cocktail cabinet build but in reality we are actually just a few cosmetic tweaks and a bit of assembly away from a completed cabinet. We were playing some games on it and we learned that we made a terrible mistake in our choice of monitor.

The LCD panel we used really does have awesome viewing angles, unless you try to look at it from the bottom side. This seems to be the case on the handful of computer LCD monitors that I tested. I’m guessing that they sacrifice viewing angle on the bottom to provide a better viewing angle from above. That way when someone stands behind you at your desk they will still see a nice crisp image on your screen.

I’ve tested the two LCD televisions we have here, and they seem to have similar viewing angles from above or below. I assume the manufacturers know that televisions are much more likely to be hung at or above eye level.

I’d like to find an LCD TV that has both the correct viewing angle and would fit well in the cocktail cabinet. The table ended up being just barely big enough to fit our 24” LCD monitor, and this monitor has a very small bezel on all four sides. In fact, the bottom bezel on my 21.5” monitors that I have on my desk would make them too tall to fit.

For now we’re just going to live with the fact that our four-player table is effectively a three player table. We were originally thinking about putting players 3 and 4 side by side on one side of the cabinet, but we thought it would be a little too cramped that way. If we stuck with that layout, we wouldn’t have a problem.

My plan is to rotate the display 180 degrees in the xorg.conf so that we can play 1-player widescreen games from the player 3 position.

This may hobble my cocktail cabinet but at least it will work. If would have been much worse if we tried to use this monitor in an upright cabinet.